Ohio State expects 20000 to 30000 fans at football games

Ruben Hill
May 23, 2020

The NCAA said Wednesday voluntary on-campus athletic activities for football and women's and men's basketball can begin June 1.

In case you missed it, Ohio State athletic director Gene Smith was made available to select members of the media on Wednesday.

Though players could begin to return, it would not be mandated for them to return to Columbus. "We would go through all of the proper protocols". "But if we don't have fans in the stands, we've determined it's not safe for them in a gathering environment".

The 2020-2021 college football season is in limbo as many sports remain suspended due to the coronavirus pandemic. From a logistical standpoint, it would be easier for his program to only play a conference schedule, Smith said. Within conferences alone, there is uncertainty as to whether all teams will be on the same page.

"We have to look at those and come up with some strategies within those groups", Smith said. Smith said there have been no conversations with Rob Mullens, the athletic director at OR, about flipping the sites of the schools' home-and-home agreement for this year and next. Their return would allow Ohio State's administration to evaluate the systems and protocols, adjust as necessary, and begin to clear a path for other Buckeye student-athletes to begin to return. That was a positive, and now will likely set off a chain of events with how Ohio State frames things to safely get back to workouts, and ultimately a plan for potentially holding real, live college football games this fall.

"Between the two facilities, through the course of a day, we feel like we can get close to 50 athletes through a workout", Smith said. That would essentially give put the number of fans in roughly the 20-30k proximity that Smith talked about.

"We're fortunate, with 100,000 seats in the stadium", Smith told reporters.

"I just think we have the talent, skill, and (stadium) capacity to provide an opportunity for a certain number of fans to have access to our particular stadium", Smith said.

Smith later clarified his comments.

"Our points system has held the test of time, so that would probably be one (way)", Smith said. "Parents and guests of our student-athletes and coaches would be a high priority".

Other reports by Click Lancashire

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